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Black and white conversion for PS Elements

I wanted to share some Photoshop methods that I currently use. I use Photoshop Elements for Mac and don’t use CS2 or CS3. Why? Simply because of the costs involved. I am not a believer is pirated software and currently do have intentions to migrate to CS3 but for the moment, the conversion methods will be for PS Elements 4.0

I have 3 primary methods for black and white conversion:

1. Direct from Canon Digital Photo Professional (DPP)
This is very simple. After adjusting curves and contrast, using picture styles, I set the style to monochrome, select filters to either green or red. The green gives a more tanned look on people whilst red gives a lighter look. Simple and quick. I mostly use this when I do batch processing.

2. Using gradient map in PS Elements
After opening the RAW using Adobe RAW, I would add a gradient map layer, which converts to black and white. Once done I would add a levels layer and adjust for contrast and range. To do this I simply click on the eyedropper tool and select the black and white points. I do this for more control in the contrast of the image.

3. Using hue and saturation using PS Elements
This is another one I’ve been using which is simply to add a hue/saturation layer on top of the image and choosing blending more to colour. Nothing will happen to the image so far until I add a second hue/saturation layer on top of the first one and this time dragging the saturation slider to zero. Once done I return to the first hue/saturation layer (the one set to blending mode colour) and I drag the hue slider until I find the effect I like.

Method 1 is mostly for batch processing whilst method 2 or 3 is used when I want to do some dodging and burning on the image. To be honest I do both method 2 or 3 on an image and decide which one I like.

Merdeka Day Parade (165).JPG
Conversion method using DPP picture style and batch processed

Tall One
Conversion method using gradient map with dodging and burning

Portrait
Conversion method using hue/saturation with dodging and burning

 

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